Accountability and Support

“Therefore, encourage one another and build one another up, as indeed you do.”
– 1 Thessalonians 5:11

Monthly Focus on Nurturing Relationship with Christ

When was I most aware of Christ’s presence in my life during the past 30 days? Why?

Discussion Questions for March 12, 2017 Sunday Mass
Second Sunday of Lent

First Reading

Genesis 12:1-4a
The LORD said to Abram: 
"Go forth from the land of your kinsfolk
and from your father's house to a land that I will show you.

"I will make of you a great nation,
and I will bless you;
I will make your name great,
so that you will be a blessing.
I will bless those who bless you
and curse those who curse you.
All the communities of the earth
shall find blessing in you."

Abram went as the LORD directed him.

First Reading Discussion Questions
F1. What was Abraham’s response to God’s request? Does this incident relate to your Lenten experience in any way? How? God called Abraham out of his homeland to start something new. Does God sometimes call you out of your comfort zone or your favorite chair to start something new?

F2. God gives a unique blessing at the start of Abraham’s journey. What would be a “blessing” for you? For whom are you a “blessing”?

Second Reading

2 Timothy 1:8b-10
Beloved:
Bear your share of hardship for the gospel
with the strength that comes from God.

He saved us and called us to a holy life,
not according to our works
but according to his own design
and the grace bestowed on us in Christ Jesus before time began,
but now made manifest
through the appearance of our savior Christ Jesus,
who destroyed death and brought life and immortality
to light through the gospel.

Second Reading Discussion Questions
S1. Are we all baptized as missionary disciples to become a living Gospel in the world? Will that involve some hardship? What does Paul’s letter to Timothy say about this? Will it involve some joy?

S2. In this reading what does St. Paul specify that saves us, grace and or our works? Or could it be that both count? Notice where he says, “Bear your share of hardship for the Gospel with the strength that comes from God.”

Verse Before The Gospel CF. MT 17:5

From the shining cloud the Father's voice is heard:
This is my beloved Son, hear him.

Gospel

Matthew 17:1-9
Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, 
and led them up a high mountain by themselves.
And he was transfigured before them; 
his face shone like the sun
and his clothes became white as light.
And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them,
conversing with him.
Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, 
"Lord, it is good that we are here.
If you wish, I will make three tents here, 
one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah."
While he was still speaking, behold,
a bright cloud cast a shadow over them, 
then from the cloud came a voice that said, 
"This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased;
listen to him."
When the disciples heard this, they fell prostrate
and were very much afraid.
But Jesus came and touched them, saying,
"Rise, and do not be afraid."
And when the disciples raised their eyes, 
they saw no one else but Jesus alone.

As they were coming down from the mountain,
Jesus charged them,
"Do not tell the vision to anyone
until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead."

Gospel Discussion Questions
G1.  In his Transfiguration, Jesus invited three of his disciples (and us) to gaze at him. Do you ask yourself every night when you saw Jesus during the day?

G2. We all need to go up the mountain to a place of silence, so we can better hear the voice of God. At least so says Pope Francis. Why can’t we just stay there praying? 

Encounter with God in prayer inspires us anew to “descend the mountain” and return to the plain where we meet many brothers weighed down by fatigue, sickness, injustice, ignorance, poverty both material and spiritual. To these brothers in difficulty, we are called to bear the fruit of that experience with God, by sharing the grace we have received. And this is curious. When we hear the Word of Jesus, when we listen to the Word of Jesus and carry it in our heart, this Word grows. Do you know how it grows? By giving it to the other!

**From Saint Louis University & Anne Osdieck

Suggested Strategies for Managing the Clock

  • For those with smaller groups or those who have the luxury of enough allotted time, it is suggested that the group cover each question from the monthly focus through the Gospel discussion questions
  • For those with larger groups or don't have the luxury of operating on God's Time, it is suggested that the group cover the monthly focus question and then feel free to skip around and attempt to answer only a few questions - whether that’s just the gospel, or the second reading and gospel, etc.